David Zwirner is pleased to present Ciudad Juárez projects, an exhibition of recent works by Francis Alÿs, on view at the gallery’s London location. This is the artist’s third solo presentation at David Zwirner and his first gallery exhibition in London in fifteen years. Over the past three decades, Alÿs has become known for his multifaceted practice, which encompasses public actions, installations, videos, paintings, and drawings. This exhibition brings together a group of works made by the artist between 2010 and 2015 in and about Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, a once prosperous border city that in recent years has been devastated by drug-related narco-violence.
Through his practice, Alÿs consistently presents his distinct poetic and imaginative sensibility towards anthropological and geopolitical concerns centered around observations of, and engagements with, everyday life, which the artist himself has described as “a sort of discursive argument composed of episodes, metaphors, or parables.” In 1986, he permanently relocated from his native Belgium to Mexico City, which has for many years provided a rich setting for the artist’s varied actions and works. Since 2004, Alÿs has shifted his attention to the inherent sociopolitical conflict in border regions, making works in interstitial locales such as the Strait of Gibraltar, Jerusalem, the Turkish-Armenian border, the open water between Havana and Key West, Florida, and the Panama Canal Zone, asserting that art is by necessity inextricably linked to politics in these conflicted areas.